The Forum Weekly Roundup: marketing as the dust Settles, goodbye to Richard and a few changes to our calendar

David Cowan

Managing Director

The Financial Services Forum

Marketing as the Dust Settles

Looking across social media, it seems that consumer sentiment towards marketing campaigns from some well intentioned brands is moving to the realms of sardonic disdain. ‘I never realised how many brands cared about my health and well being until they emailed to tell me to stay safe during Covid-19’ remarked one user on Twitter, referencing the many emails received over the past few weeks.

Our inboxes have indeed been filled with good wishes from companies we know well and also not so well. During the first flush of the crisis, there was certainly a pertinent opportunity for brands to touch base with their customers to let them know how they were reacting and helping during a difficult time. But a fine line has now been drawn between a touch point for the sake of brand vanity and the genuine dissemination of useful information to customers. Perhaps sometimes, less is more.

As we reach the end of our third week of lock down and social distancing, we seem to be entering a phase of acceptance, coming to terms with a new reality. I suspect this will also bring with it a new phase of crisis marketing, moving from telling our customers what we are doing to demonstrating stability, consistency and delivering on promises. With many pre-Corona billboard and TV advertisements seeming increasingly alien, relevance, without appearing opportunistic, will be the key to successful marketing as the dust settles.

Goodbye to Richard Nolan

As many of you may already be aware, this week marked the end of an era for The Financial Services Forum with the departure of Richard Nolan, Operations Director. For over 18 years, Richard has been instrumental in developing the Forum community and I know he will be as missed by Members as he will be by the Forum team.

It is difficult to summarise Rich’s achievements in a short paragraph, but some of his most notable activities have included including editing and publishing our quarterly print magazine Argent; managing and continuously striving to improve our website and Knowledge Centre and launching (and running!) our flagship Awards for Marketing Effectiveness, as well as our new Product and Service Innovation Awards.

I hope you will join other Members in connecting with Richard on LinkedIn and keeping in touch. If you have any questions about projects you’ve previously worked with Richard on, please drop Jasmine a line.

CMO Surgery at 3pm and Calendar Changes

At 1500-1530pm we will be running the first of our CMO Surgery webinar panel sessions via our BrightTALK channel, discussing the marketing challenges of the coronavirus crisis and the road ahead.

Today, we are being joined by Sue Helmont, Marketing Director at AIG Life, Ian Henderson, CEO at AML, David Lundholm, Director, New Income Streams at L&G Insurance and Claire Richards, UK Retail Marketing Manager at Allianz Global Investors. It should be a great way to round off the week.

We are going to be making a few changes to our calendar over the next few weeks, moving some of the marketing discipline focused webinars and replacing them with topics relevant to our current situation. Feedback from Members has been that this would be of more use and value at this time, as they grapple with new challenges. We will be sending a note out on Monday morning detailing all the changes in full, so please keep an eye out for that.

If you have any ideas for topics or discussions you’d The Forum to cover, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line. I’d also be interested to hear your thoughts on the webinars we have held so far, and any suggestions for improvements.

As ever, I’d like to wish you a healthy and relaxing weekend.

Speak to you soon,



Previous article

The Forum Weekly Roundup: on being alone but still together, doing good for the wider good and a surgery of CMO’s

Next article

The Forum Weekly Roundup: on confronting the inevitability of uncertainty, repurposing resources to give back and communication theory